Massachusetts Cop Forum banner
1 - 4 of 4 Posts

·
MassCops Angel
Joined
·
121,497 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
By THOMAS WATKINS
Associated Press Writer

LOS ANGELES --
A report by a civil liberties group has found that Los Angeles police officers are more likely to stop and search black and Hispanic residents than they are whites, even though whites are more often found carrying guns and contraband.
"The results of this study raise grave concerns that African-Americans and Hispanics are over-stopped, over-frisked, over-searched, and over-arrested," said report author Ian Ayres, a Yale Law School economist and professor.
Ayres' report, published Monday by the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California, analyzed the Los Angeles Police Department's own accounts of 810,000 pedestrian and motor vehicle stops in the year from July 2003 to June 2004.
Even after researchers controlled for demographics and neighborhood crime rates, they found significantly higher stop rates for black and Latino residents. For every 10,000 residents, blacks were nearly three times more likely to be stopped than white and other "non-minority" residents, facing 3,400 more stops. Hispanics were stopped on 350 more occasions.
Even though Ayres used the LAPD's own data, his findings were at odds with an earlier analysis carried out for the department. The LAPD acknowledged racial disparities in some divisions but, after controlling for several variables, found "no consistent pattern of race effects."
Ayres, however, said one officer stopped more than 100 blacks and 100 Hispanics but only one white. The professor did not include that officer in his analysis because it was an extreme situation and could skew results.
A summary of Ayres' report states that during the past five years the LAPD has received nearly 1,200 citizen complaints alleging racial profiling, but the department hasn't sustained a single one.
"Los Angeles officials have yet to acknowledge the scope of the problem of racially biased policing or to fully embrace solutions," the summary stated.
Police Chief William Bratton said he disagrees strongly with the report's findings and interpretation.
"This department does not engage in racial profiling, has not. We have significant safeguards built in to protect against that," Bratton said Monday at a press conference. "Nobody investigates allegations of racial bias or racial profiling more aggressively than this department, this commission and this inspector general."
Tim Sands, president of the Los Angeles Police Protective League union, strongly disputed the report's findings and pointed out that the department mirrors the racial demographics of Los Angeles, with more Hispanic officers than white officers.
"Dr. Ayres is trying to manipulate existing data to prove what 9,700 individual officers are thinking when they make traffic stops - which is an exercise that might work on a spreadsheet at Yale, but doesn't work on the streets of Los Angeles," Sands said.

Wire Service
 

·
Zombie Hunter
Joined
·
4,815 Posts
This is classic "Ivory Tower" thinking. Looking at raw data vs. looking at the actual circumstances of the stops. Like it or not, most minorities live in low-income neighborhoods, hence are more likely to have vehicles not up to standards, more likely to have unpaid tickets, which result in suspended licenses and warrants. The fact that most liberals don't want to discuss is that low income people, whether they are black, white, or purple are more likely to be involved in crime. Living in a "ghetto" or "hood" awash with street crime and drugs is far more likely to invite the intervention of police officers then a relatively benign middle-class neighborhood. There is no "one-for-one" exchange of one "white" police interaction for every "black" police interaction.
 

·
Czar of Cyncism and Satire
Joined
·
2,070 Posts
Figures lie, and liars figure. They can skewer these numbers to make the cops look good, or look bad. Either way you slice the pie charts, the cops are doing their jobs.
 

·
Subscribing Member
Joined
·
3,480 Posts
What they fail to take into consideration (it would seem intentionally) is that Los Angeles is the street gang capital of the nation and has been for many, many years. For Los Angeles, 99.99999% of the street gang members are either Black, Hispanic and even some Asian. There aren't any White gang members here, at least not street gang members. We have a few motorcycle gang members but not many. (Most of them are either east or north of us.) LAPD is a very proactive department so we do make a great number of stops.

This means that the traffic stops we make of these ethnic groups are because many of them are gang members. We're looking for guns, drugs and warrants, usually in that order. Maybe the ACLU folks would like to move into one of these "lovely" neighborhoods for a while and see what they think then. I would love to take some of them out on a ride along with me so they can see what the real world is like, not just some numbers on a piece of paper.

I also like how the ACLU released this study yesterday, just two days before the annual Police Brutality March, which takes place tomorrow. Guess the ACLU wants to give them more fuel for the fire... which is typical.
 
1 - 4 of 4 Posts
Top